A Case For Black & White Photography

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Ice, Reflections, Mirror Lake, Yosemite, 1974. I was assisting a January workshop in Yosemite led by Al Weber and Oliver Gagliani, and on an off afternoon went up to Mirror Lake with a couple of friends and our cameras. After spending about 30 minutes struggling with a detail of some lake ice, I moved on up the trail and was taken by this scene. Sometimes things just fall into place.

Working in black and white doesn’t have to be difficult, but it does require some thought with regard to tools and approach.

“Seeing” Black-And-White In A Color World

A major consideration is the fact that even though we may be working toward a black-and-white image, the world in front of our lens (and our eyes) is in living color. To help me make a visual “leap” from color to black and white, I look beyond the colors in a scene and instead look at the relationships between those colors. Then I imagine how I can manipulate those relationships through the use of filters to create emphasis or focus.

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